Sexual Behavior, STIs and the Male Sex Work Market

Trevon D. Logan, Ohio State University

Male sex workers serve multiple markets: gay-identified men, heterosexually-identified men, as well as their own private sexual partners. Research on sexual behavior and STIs has noted this unique social and epidemiological position of male sex workers. To date, however, the vast majority of the scholarship is qualitative. We know little about the population size, characteristics and geography of male sex work. We assemble a rich and unique data set from the largest online male sex worker website to estimate the value of sexual behaviors, personal characteristics and safer sex practices in the male sex worker market. We find male escorts who advertise safe sex charge higher prices for services. We also find that race and sexual behavior have a strong influence on the prices charged by male sex workers. We conclude by noting how our results inform policy debates about body image, desire and receptiveness to safer sex messages in gay communities.

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Presented in Session 6: Sexuality and STIs